What’s In A Name? Branding A New Business

Choosing a name for your new business is a big deal. It is one of the first things you need to decide when starting out, and once chosen it will influence everything else, from logo and website design, to business cards and promotional material. But most of all, just as your own name stays with you, so will your business name. Although it might be possible to change it down the line if you find you’ve made a horrible mistake, that scenario is best avoided by getting it right first time.

So, no pressure then. Here are a few tips to help you get started.

Think of your customers

This might seem obvious, but the name you settle on for your new business must appeal to your target audience. For example, tech-savvy youngsters are not likely to be attracted to the same name as their steam-age grandparents. In terms of brand identity and reputation your business name will be front row, centre. It will play a key role in attracting customers and promoting your business, so think about the message your name conveys.

Kick around ideas

A brainstorming session with others will spark new ideas and also help narrow down the field. You might think of words like ‘safe, reliable and trustworthy’, or use an entirely different pallete such as ‘exciting, vibrant and fun’. The name you choose needs to strike the right chord with your customers and reflect the vision and values of your business.

Descriptive or Creative?

If you want to play it safe, a descriptive name will do the job better than one that is creative. Many sole traders stick with their own name to promote their business, but this may not feel right for your start-up. Consider including a word that informs customers about your values, such as ‘eco’ or ‘green’, or a reference to your location.

Creative names are altogether more tricky. Puns can work well and attract attention, but you run the risk of making your customers feel dumb if they don’t get it. Tech companies and businesses hoping to build up a strong web presence might go for zappy or deliberately misspelled words – think Skype or Flickr. A word of warning: if you have that unique, killer name all ready to roll, make sure you do some thorough research before taking the plunge – you don’t want to land yourself with a name that is unintentionally inappropriate like these poor guys.

Fancy a bit of entertainment? 

Have a go with an online Business Name Generator. You type in a word related to your business – say ‘garden’ – and it generates a whole bunch of nutty made-up names for you to consider. So, ‘garden’ becomes Gardenicious, Dynagarden and Gardenosis. Well, OK, maybe not.

and finally…

Invest in a professional

Choosing a name for your new business should be exciting and fun, but it can become fraught with dilemmas. If it starts to feel like an overwhelming and gruelling task, don’t struggle to the point of exhaustion – seek advice from the experts. A professional designer will work alongside you to help decide on a name that will give your new business the best possible start.